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Both Gach’s time with Utah basketball team is over

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Utah Utes guard Both Gach (11) celebrates after the Utes beat the Colorado Buffaloes 74-72 in overtime at the Huntsman Center in Salt Lake City on Saturday, March 7, 2020.

Spenser Heaps, Deseret News

SALT LAKE CITY — It remains to be seen if sophomore guard Both Gach keeps his name in the running for the upcoming NBA draft.

But even if he withdraws his name from consideration, the 6-foot-6 athlete will not return to the University of Utah’s basketball team. That news was first reported by national basketball writer Jeff Goodman and later confirmed by Ute coach Larry Krystkowiak, who provided a statement through the basketball program.

“We have been very supportive of Both entering the NBA draft to obtain valuable evaluations from team personnel these past two months so this comes as a surprise to myself and our staff after learning of Both’s intentions to transfer,” Krystkowiak said.

“Although the decision by Both to leave was not something we had planned or hoped for, our program continues to move forward with our players who are driven and excited to be a part of our Utah Basketball family. Sometimes one’s individual desires and goals don’t always align with the program they are a part of. However, our focus is and continues to be the players who are fully committed to our program, including our incoming recruiting class.”

A four-star wing from Minnesota, Gach started in 25 games as a sophomore this past season. He averaged 10.7 points, 3.6 rebounds and 2.9 assists in 30.4 minutes of action.

Gach was named Pac-12 Player of the Week at the end of the 2019-20 season after scoring a career-high 28, hitting an overtime-forcing basket and sinking three straight free throws with 0.6 left in a win over Colorado.

He also had a triple-double earlier in the season against Mississippi Valley State.

Gach would be the second Ute to enter the transfer portal this spring. Seven-foot-4-inch center Matt Van Komen transferred to Saint Mary’s in April.

Leading scorer Timmy Allen is also getting an evaluation on his NBA potential before deciding if he’ll enter the draft.